So much has happened in just a week…

by grace on April 3, 2022

…and the most important thing is that there was a Harley sighting!!!

Last Sunday I spent a great deal of time creating an eye-catching lost cat flyer and changing it around a lot making many copies. Doing this made me feel that at least I was doing something about poor lost Harley.

Monday wasn’t such a good day. Rainy and dreary, plus I worked myself up about Pumpkin’s eye and texted a lot of people and talked on the phone, then finally called the vet and they said we could bring him in that day.

We took him and they wanted to keep him there for a few hours, so in the meantime we drove to Edinburg to put up flyers and when we got there it felt like it was a completely fruitless endeavor. I put one up in the sad little post office and another up at the gas station but the entire downtown area was boarded up and it looked like every house surely held a meth lab.

I stapled flyers to several utility poles and felt discouraged and hopeless.

We picked up Harley and the vet said he had a corneal ulcer. He needs a drop in his eye three times a day followed by ointment, with a 10-minute gap in between. They put a plastic cone over his head and he seemed OK with it, although very dejected.

We got him home and took off the cone so he could reach his food bowl, and then Kevin went downstairs and I finally put the cone back on Pumpkin whereby he totally freaked out. He crashed into everything, desperately trying to flee the cone. Smash smash, smashing into a shelf next to the couch and into a table and smash smash smash. It was horrible and we were both traumatized. Finally I got it off him and it was all battered. I called Sunny, our friend the cat-whisperer and said he’d be ok without wearing the cone.

Whew. Not a great day, all in all.

But then, Tuesday night, Nancy called to say that her husband Butch had spotted Harley down at their burn pile. Unbelievable! I didn’t know exactly where this burn pile was, but it was fantastic to know that Harley hadn’t run away and hadn’t been eaten by a coyote. Or maybe he did run away but then he came back. Doesn’t matter, it’s just good to know that he’s somewhere near Nancy, because she feeds everybody who comes near the house.

We still have two cameras set up on her property in hopes of catching sight of Harley just so we know he’s sticking around, but so far it has just been photos of cats, deer, possum, raccoons, leaves, more cats…but no Harley. But at least we are hopeful that he’ll want to stick around because of the plethora of food. When I dropped by later in the week to swap out SD cards in the cameras so I could bring them home and look through them on the computer, I realized that the burn pile is kind of down the road from their house, so it’s not as close as I’d hoped. But still…hopeful, that’s my mood right at the moment. Harley lives!

As for Pumpkin, I was worried because he kept his eye shut and I didn’t know if I was even getting any of the drop into his eye because when I pulled his lower lid down all I could see was the inner lid. On Friday I called the vet with many questions and we got to take him back on Saturday morning. When the vet checked out his eye she said he was improving, but it would be a good idea to put in a drop and then wait thirty minutes before putting in the first ointment, so the drop would definitely get totally absorbed. So now it’s a good hour that I spend with him three times a day, which is fine because he’s completely sweet and loving.

So things are pretty good right now, I think.

Meanwhile…I realize there are plenty of photos from January and February that haven’t made it here, but since many have to do with lots of snow, I’m over that. So here are just a few from March, which, dang, it’s already April.

A big platoon of white pelicans mid-March; maybe they’re migrating back home? Not sure about that.

Kevin took Les Paul down to the water and Spot joined them.

I love this picture. Just relaxin’.

Marley spend most of her time upstairs in the guest bedroom but she comes down quite a bit to eat from everybody’s food bowls. This is the first time we saw her on the couch.

Sometimes she lies in Kevin’s lap, which is awesome. Or on his legs…

And here’s a canna lily that bloomed for quite a while inside. Maybe it’ll warm up enough to put plants outside again.

Kevin took me to see a wonderful production of “Fiddler on the Roof” at Sangamon Auditorium.

It was a fantastic production, so well-done, and also so sad and overwhelming because in the end all the people in the town are forced out by the Russians…it’s incomprehensible that the Russians continue to commit atrocities right now.

Whew. On that happy note, I hope you’re enjoying yourself…

Ok then,



The Mystery of the Missing Gift Bags

by grace on December 24, 2021

First of all…I have no business sitting here on the couch but I’m trying to give myself a break. The most important thing is that Kevin somehow managed to get everything on the porch plugged in so now the blowup Minion and snowman are happily bogging around. I should go turn the outside xmas light on right now, because it’s a grey day.

I finally made that list of stuff to do and broke it down by day but then didn’t get enough done every day and yesterday I worked myself into quite a frazzle. I also wrote a very very detailed list for things to do today which is why the lack of business I have just sitting here. We’re having people over for dinner tonight, which is now coming right up.

Some of the things, though, are “chop tomatoes for salad” and I didn’t buy any more tomatoes so there are only seven of them, so that shouldn’t take so long. So in theory all the stuff won’t take but a bit of time, but that never actually happens. But at least I’m pretty sure I wrote down everything, including “water orchid,” because it had to be watered every Friday, and I already did that so I was able to cross it off the list and feel ahead of the game.

I was lying in bed this morning, desperate to get back to sleep because I knew I hadn’t slept enough, and I started to worry about Marley. Last night when I was upstairs sitting on the floor with her, she was just lying there on the floor, letting me pet her, but not seeming too great. So this morning lying in bed I thought WHAT IF SHE DIED IN THE NIGHT? And got myself fairly worked up.

When I got up, Kevin had been up there with her and said she was just fine. Whew.

Here she is; she has enjoyed lying on this kitty scratcher even though it doesn’t look particularly comfortable to me. But Lester has always relished lying on top of it, so it must be a cat thing.

Sweet kitty.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the story behind the title of this post – earlier in the week I was rummaging around in the basement searching for my Xmas gift bags. I have quite a collection of them and keep adding to it because I buy more after xmas, and some of them I save to give to Kevin, and the gift bags are a big part of my christmas wrapping experience. But after spending way too much time looking I finally gave up. Kevin then scoured the basement, looking in all the tubs down there, and there are many, many tubs. Many of them. He said he couldn’t find them, and I assured him that that had to be there, because what would have happened to them? Did somebody come in the night and steal them? That couldn’t have happened, because Riley would have alerted us, the way he hisses and growls at Spot whenever Spot appears at the kitty door in the back, hoping to get in.

Kevin went back down after a while and miraculously found them; he’d put a container of leather-working materials on top of my Very Important tub.

So whew for that. I’d be in much worse shape right now if I hadn’t had my gift bags.

Ok then,

Mrs. only a few more hours to get stuff done Hughes.

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Six More Days…

by grace on December 19, 2021

Yeah. Six. Not many. I woke up earlier than I wanted to this morning because my mind was exploding a little bit about all the stuff I have to get done this week.

I’ve been blearily sitting here on the couch for a while now, trying to organize my thoughts about what I really, really need to do but of course since I’m not lying in bed, my brain has slowed right down and I’m not making any progress about stuff. I have a pad of paper, trying to write a list of critical things to do, but now I feel like it’s not that big a deal anyway.

So here’s our porch.

But it doesn’t actually look like that anymore because last week…the week before? we blew a fuse because in addition to all the lights, we have about four heated kitty pads out there and it was too much for the outlets. Kevin went out a few times and tried to fix them but finally gave in, and we called an electrician who said it’d be a week before he could get here.

But then, Christmas miracle, he had a cancellation and came last Tuesday and fixed things. Yay for that! Except now the two blow-ups aren’t blown up because I think it was too much and so instead they’re just forlornly lying there.

Maybe I’ll ask Kevin if we could plug them in again? I could ask him right now, he’s doing something in the kitchen right behind me, but it seems like too much effort to have a conversation right now.

Overly-tired, I guess that’s my feeling.

And here’s the Hillbilly Hideout, the little warming center we’ve constructed for our outside kitties.

It’s made of an outside table covered with boards on the top and plexiglass around the sides and two heated pads on top of a rug and a pillow. Only three sides are covered, but at least it gives them some protection from the cold. We do have two perfectly nice cat houses with heated pads inside them but so far they’ve been resistant to going inside them which is why we constructed the hideout. We named it that (who came up with that name? Can’t remember.) because it adds to the general hillbilly look of our front porch right now. In addition to the hideout there’s an old leather red leather chair with the leather flaking off and a bunch of other stuff. I decided to cover everything with festive lights and the kitties seem to enjoy it.

Which is all that matters, right?

So now we have four inside and two outside cats. Mom’s friend Wanda passed away unexpectedly on Friday, and she had one senior cat named Marley who is very sweet but wasn’t expected to last longer a few months ago, but she continues to survive, so Kevin and I are adopting her. So tomorrow we’ll have five inside cats. Marley will spend her time upstairs in the guest room, not sure if she’ll ever want to interact with the other cats, but we’ll see how that goes.

It’s sad that Wanda also has two very sweet outside cats who she never brought in because she was concerned that Marely wouldn’t like them. I met them and it seemed like they deserve a nice inside home, but I think Wanda’s sons will be lucky to find them an outside home.

Whew. Things to do. But maybe not so many?

ok then,

christmas countdown grace